This past weekend at UFC 292, we saw an entertaining bantamweight scrap kick off the main card. Marlon “Chito” Vera (23-8-1) and Pedro Munhoz (20-8, 2 NC) went head-to-head in an action packed fight to kick off the PPV.
Entering the bout, I was a little worried about Chito Vera getting into a points fight with Pedro Munhoz. While Vera has a lot more power than Munhoz, Munhoz throws with so much volume that it can be overwhelming. Through the first two rounds, it felt like Munhoz was scoring a lot of points with his volume.
Chito is normally a really slow starter which was another reason to be concerned. However, in this fight, he tried to match the pace of Munhoz. While he wasn’t throwing as much, the power difference was huge and his shots were doing real damage which made a difference with the judges.
In the third round, Vera really pulled away and seemingly hurt Munhoz a couple of times. When the scores were being read at UFC 292, I thought that there was a real argument for Munhoz due to the volume. However, all three judges agreed that the damage outweighed the volume and Chito Vera got the win.
UFC Title Shot Next?
With a win over Pedro Munhoz especially after he lost to Cory Sandhagen, you wouldn’t think that Chito Vera was in the mix for a title shot. However, that changed with the result of the main event. Sean O’Malley knocked out Aljamain Sterling to become the bantamweight champion.
O’Malley and Vera have history together. Vera is still the only man with a professional win over O’Malley. However, O’Malley doesn’t consider it a true loss because he suffered a leg injury early in the fight. Granted, the leg injury was likely due to the leg kicks from Vera.
Nevertheless, because of this history, Vera might be getting a UFC title shot next. O’Malley said he’d be interested in having that fight in December and Vera has already said that he wants the shot. The only thing that would deter this fight is if O’Malley and the UFC decide to go in a different direction for the title shot.
If that was to happen, I like the idea of Vera fighting Petr Yan next. Those two have had words in the past and I think it would be an excellent fight. However, if I was to put money on it right now, I think O’Malley – Vera happens in December for the title.